COURT SPORTS – WALL CLIMBING: A CLIMBING CODE
- A climbing party/team of three is the minimum.
- Rope up on all exposed places and for all travel. Anchor all belays.
- Keep the party/team together, and OBEY the leader.
- NEVER CLIMB BEYOND YOUR ABILITY AND KNOWLEDGE.
- Never let judgment be overruled by desire when choosing the route or turning back.
- Carry the necessary equipment at all times.
- Check equipment before climbing!!!!
- Follow the precepts of sound mountaineering as set forth in textbooks of recognized merit.
- Behave at all times in a manner that will not reflect unfavorably upon the sport.
Carabiners – The locking carabiner is used. They are spring loaded with gates that automatically close when released. Check the gates, locks and the points holding the gates. Lock carabiners at each end of the webbing. Carabiners should face upward and open towards the wall.
Harness – Inspect the tie in the loop, both inside and outside of the entire harness for fraying and wear. All belts and leg loops must be adjusted for a snug fit.
Belay Friction Device – The ATC (Air Traffic Controller) is a friction devise that relieves much of the stress of the climber’s body weight from the belayer when a fall occurs. When in use, the ATC is attached by a plastic wire bail, to a locking carabiner which is attached to the tie in loop of the belayer’s harness. The bail points toward the belayer.
Rope – Check the entire length of rope by squeezing it between the thumb and index finger of one hand while pulling through with the other hand. This is done to detect possible core damage or other internal abnormalities. Also, visually inspect it during this process
DAILY SAFETY CHECK
Before a climbing pair/team begins, their first climb of the day, they will be checked out by the teacher, demonstrating the following proficiencies: (Continual monitoring is essential).
- Properly buckled harnesses
- Properly hooked to belay devices, harnesses, human anchors, etc.
- Properly tied knots
- Properly exchanged commands
** If at any time you notice one of these checks is incorrect, the teacher must call STOP and step in and correct the climbers/team before they continue.
The knot used to tie the belay rope to the ATC/harness is a Figure ‘8’ Knot with a follow through and a back-up or Keeper Knot.
Make certain the completed knots are close to the body with only a few inches of loop (a fist width). The first ‘8’ is tied approximately three feet from the end of the rope, the end passing through the tie in loop of the harness, then is completed by reweaving the finishing off with the keeper knot.
The keeper knot is tied by wrapping the 12-14” of tail twice around the climber end of the rope with the second wrap being closer to the belayers body. The remaining few inches of tail is then inserted inside the two wraps from the belayer side and is pulled out toward the climber.
BELAYER/CLIMBER SAFETY CHECK
Before voice commands begin, the belayer hooks in to the back up belayer, the rope handler and the human anchor. The climber ties into the belay rope/ATC. The climber checks the belayer’s attachments and the belayer checks the climbers’ attachment to the rope. This procedure is followed before each climb and is another way of assuring that the climbing pair is assuming responsibility for their own safety. The Lakeview teaching staff/administration will continually monitor all activity within the climbing area.
Verbal communication is essential between any belayer and climber. Each must know precisely the intentions of the other. Once off the floor, the climber is in a very vulnerable position. There will be many distractions both within the climbing area and from the many activity courts around the climbing wall. Clear consistent voice commands are the only way of ensuring that there are no misunderstandings between any of the climbing team.
Before Climbing Starts:
- waist belt and leg loops assembled properly
- all buckles secured
- carabineers closed and locked (gate-check)
- belay devices set-up properly
- secured and fastened properly (if used)
- knots and hitches tied, dressed and set
- jewelry removed
- hair tied back
- no loose clothes
Verbal Climbing Communication:
Before climbing starts:
Climber – ‘On Belay’ (name of belayer)… (this means ‘I’m ready to go, is the belayer ready?)
Belayer – ‘Belay On’ (name of climber)… (this means the slack in the rope is taken up, all belay systems are checked – the belayer is ready and the climber is secure – most important…THE BRAKE HAND stays gripped on the rope for the total time the climber is off the ground and is only removed after the climber and belayer exchange ‘Off Belay’/’Belay Off’ commands)
Climber – ‘Climbing’ (name of belayer)… (this means ‘I’m ready to climb’)
Belayer – ‘Climb On’ (name of climber)… (this means it is ‘okay to climb’)
Climber – ‘Slack’ (name of belayer)… (this means that the climber is asking for 3 inches of rope)
Climber – ‘Tension/Up Rope’ (name of belayer)… (this means that the climber is asking for slack to be take out)
*Anyone – ‘STOP”... (anyone wanting attention for a dangerous situation)
BEFORE BEING LOWERED TO THE GROUND:
Climber -‘Lower Me/Descending’ (name of belayer)… (this means that the climber is ready to come down and wants to sit in the harness”
Belayer – ‘Lowering/Descending On’ (name of climber)… (this means that the belayer has the rope in the ‘Locked Off’ position and is ready to lower the climber)
AT THE END OF THE CLIMB:
Climber – ‘Off Belay’ (name of belayer)…(this means the climber calls to this command informing the belayer he/she is safely standing on the floor.
Belayer – ‘Belay Off’ (name of climber)… (this means the belayer (team) no longer has the climber secure and can release the BRAKE HAND and unhook from the anchor/team)
Belaying is a procedure by which one (or two) member(s) of the climbing party, the belayer, manages the rope that is tied to the climber. The belayer(s) keep the rope appropriately tight to minimize the possibility of injury. If an excessive amount of slack is allowed to exist, a climber could fall further than is necessary.
There is a fine line between a rope that is too loose and one that is too tight. More skilled climbers might want a rope that is relatively loose. This allows the climber a certain feeling of freedom. This personal preference must take a second priority to the responsibility of the staff /administration of the Lakeview climbing wall to ensure safety. Once the climber is tied into the rope, the belayer (team) is prepared and voice commands have occurred, the belay procedure takes place. Assuming the rope is tight before the climbers starts, the belayer (team) will start with the feeling hand about 12” up the rope which runs from the belayer to the top anchor. The feeling hand will grip the rope with the thumb pointing upward. The BRAKE HAND will grip the end of the rope that comes out the right/left side of the ATC. The thumb of the brake hand will point toward the ATC.
After the commands are exchanged, it is the responsibility of the belayer (team) to stop any fall by the climber. Immediately, as the climber starts up the wall the belayer (team) starts to take in the slack. This is accomplished by pulling the rope downward with the feeling hand, and simultaneously the brake hand will pull the same amount of rope out of the opposite side of the ATC. As the brake hand pulls the rope outward and downward in an arching motion. So, by the time the slack is taken up, the belayer (team) has the rope in the brake position.
UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES MAY THE BRAKE HAND BE REMOVED FROM THE ROPE WHILE THE CLIMBER IS DEPENDING ON THE BELAY
In anticipation of the climber making another move, the belayer (team) returns both hands to their original position. This is accomplished by reaching down with the feeling hand and gripping the rope below the brake hand. The brake hand can then be slide up the rope, returning it to the starting position. The feeling hand then returns to its starting position.
A climber must be lowered once a climb has been completed. To maintain control of the rope as the climber gets lowered to the floor, the belayer (team) must grip the belay rope with both hands on the brake hand side of the ATC as low as can be reached. Slowly, the rope should be worked through the ATC until both hands are at the ATC. When the hands are slid back down, the rope should be gripped and returned to the ATC, etc. If the rope is allowed to run through the hands, this action might cause burns, and loss of con